GORHAM—The Rams picked up a huge victory over struggling Kennebunk on Wednesday night, Feb. 20: Seven different Gorhamites contributed goals to the 11-0 rout, with Aidan Enck racking up a hat-trick and Nolan Gava and Alex O’Connor notching two apiece.
“Goal-scoring’s been hard for us all season,” Gorham head coach Jon Portwine said. “So it was good for us to respond, the way to did in the second period especially. We buried a lot of pucks; we really played well in the second period. Very happy.”
Gava opened the scoring early in the first on an assist by Joey Curesky; O’Connor made it 2-0 roughly 10 minutes later, assisted by Tanner Garand and Dom Lorello.
The second period, though, is when Gorham really caught fire: Enck scored his first (assisted by Cole Perreault and Nick Gray), Aidan Owens made it 4-0 (assists to O’Connor and Garand), Gray made it 5-0 (Gava), Enck 6-0 (Gray), Peter Richards 7-0 (Gava), Enck 8-0 (Gray), Gava 9-0 (Gray) and O’Connor 10-0 (Garand). After that – come the third – the Rams slowed down a bit, adding just one more: Perreault from Trevor Gray. 11-0 the final.
“In between the first and the second, I went in and I just kind of said that we needed to pick up our game, we needed to move the puck,” Portwine said. “And, guys should be hungry; if they need to be motivated by anything, they should be motivated by putting the puck in the net. And they responded. They came out in the second period and put he game away.”
“In between the second and third, I told them I was very impressed,” Portwine continued. “And I think that’s the first time I’ve said that all season. We shared the puck, we moved the puck, we buried the puck; all the things we needed to do, and we didn’t give up a shot that period. I thought that was important. We were very responsible with the puck and kept it in the offensive zone.”
The victory closes Gorham’s regular season at 10-8. They enter the tournament as the five-seed, a slot back from Leavitt/Gray-New Gloucester/Oak Hill/Poland (the “Kings”), and a slot ahead of Brunswick. Greely owns No. 1 at a smooth 16-2. When the Rams clashed with the Rangers back on Jan. 19, they nearly walked away with a W, losing just 3-2. A few weeks later, however, Greely severely thrashed them, 11-1, so it’s hard to say where Gorham really stands relative to the top dogs.
One thing’s for sure, though: If the Rams play to their potential, they could do quite well for themselves in the bracketing. Gorham will travel to the No. 4 Kings on Tuesday, Feb. 26 for the B South quarterfinals.
The Rams celebrated senior night on Wednesday. 10 seniors dot the Gorham roster this year: Giuseppe Brown, Trevor Loubier, Curesky, Nick Gray, Trevor Gray, O’Connor, Garand, Tyler Weeks, Lorello and Ben Nault.
“This group is special because there’s 10 of them,” Portwine said of his elder statesmen. “This is definitely the largest group of seniors I’ve ever had, and they’re all really good guys. I like being around them; I love having them play for me; I’ve gotten to know them all over four years. And they’re just, they’re good kids.”
Adam Birt can be reached at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter: @CurrentSportsME.
Aidan Enck earned a hat-trick for the Rams vs. Kennebunk.
Tanner Garand is one of 10 seniors on this year’s Rams squad.
Tyler Weeks drives forward.
Giuseppe Brown didn’t face a whole lot of shots vs. Kennebunk.
Trevor Loubier surveys the action, dashing along the boards.
Alex O’Connor contributed in a big way to Gorham’s 11-0 win over Kennebunk.
Dominic Lorello cuts through the corner for the Rams.
Trevor Gray powers toward the Gorham net.
Joey Curesky assisted on the Rams’ first goal against Kennebunk.
Nick Gray cuts up ice for the Rams.